Indian Foreign Minister and his government should stop meddling with Sri Lankan internal affairs -An open letter to Foreign Minister of India
Posted on February 4th, 2023

Dr Sudath Gunasekara Mahanuwara

Indian Foreign Minister and his government should stop meddling with Sri Lankan internal affairs and mind their own business.

An open letter to Foreign Minister Jaishankar’s latest attempt to interfere with Sri Lankan internal affairs, violating all accepted diplomatic and international etiquettes and principles.

I quote here the gist of a news report that refers to the Indian stand as stated in the press release by Foreign Minister Jaishankar of India.

1.India considers the full implementation of the 13th Amendment in Sri Lanka “critical” for achieving reconciliation with the minority Tamil community, EAM S Jaishankar said.

2.early conduct of provincial elections is critical” for both the political and economic stability of the debt-ridden island nation.

3.”Durable efforts towards reconciliation are in the interests of all sections in Sri Lanka.

4 I also spoke of the need to pay special attention to the requirements of the Indian-origin Tamil community,” he said.

The above statements (1,2. 3 & 4) clearly display the main purpose of the Indian F/Ministers visit last week. What he has stated I believe are the views of the Indian Government as well. This is nothing but a mere parroting and continuation of the peculiar Indian Foreign policy that it had been following towards Sri Lanka since 1948 and more particularly after Rajiv Gandhi’s times.

Reading through this statement he looks more an agitated representative of the crazy Tamil politicians in this country rather than a minister of a foreign country visiting this country on a diplomatic mission. I am hundred percent convinced he was just parroting the requests of the TNA politicians whom he met the previous evening in Colombo before he left for India. Isn’t it a shame and a disgrace too for such a highly rated IOS man to utter rubbish like this. It may be that he will be adored by the communal Tamils in Sri Lanka and those in Tamilnadu as a hero. But he must at least now realize that he has only tarnished his international image as well as that of India and downgraded it to very low levels by performing a cheap peacock dance.

I am more than convinced that he is also following the footsteps of Dixit who made the same blunder in 1987 behaving like an Indian viceroy in front of our President JR.

Before we proceed on the broader intervention let us look at what the Indian Ambassador Dixit said in 1987 before they singed the JR/Rajiv Accord. that Sri Lanka should give assurances to India on the following points:” (Dixit) as if they had already conquered Sri Lanka.

1. Reduction and phasing out of foreign military and intelligence personnel in Sri Lanka from the United Kingdom, Pakistan, Israel, South Africa and so on.

2. Sri Lanka should reorganize its foreign and defense policies and reduce its involvement with USA, Pakistan, China, Israel and South Africa.

3. Sri Lanka should give some assurances to India that its seaports and airports would not be utilized by foreign powers which were antagonistic towards India or which affected India’s security interest negatively.

4. Sri Lanka should fulfil the assurances which it gave in 1985 that India would be given an opportunity to maintain the Trincomalee Oil Tank Farms and that Sri Lanka would prevent foreign broadcasting stations like the Voice of America from being utilized for military purposes by countries like the United States, West Germany, etc. said’

 To me it looks a commandment by a medieval colonial power to one of its colonies

Jaishankar’s press release I mentioned at the opening of this letter is brief but compared with Dixit’s dictation, it also reaffirms, confirms and displays the same expansionist Indian mentality that prevailed during Rajiv Ghandhi’s time, when the Rajiv/JR Accord of July 29th 1987 was singed. This arrogant Indian stand and the police man’s role with regard to Sri Lanka has now come to stay as a regular threat and fashion too. The most notable point I see here is, that Sri Lanka is the only country in respect of which India makes such stupid and arrogant statements. It does not issue such humiliating statements in respect of any other country or force any other government either in Asia or Africa, where the British had also settled millions of Indians during the18th and 19th centuries and left them behind high and dry, creating enormous political, economic and cultural problems to those countries as well when they left the colonies in the 20th century. It may be that we don’t have leaders with a backbone to react and put the Indian minister in his place.

As for me as a patriotic citizen of my country I strongly condemn and protest against this vituperative and reproachful statement made by him and demand that he should tender an open apology to the people of Sri Lanka on behalf of the Indian people at least before his next visit.

Talking about the Rajiv/JR Accord July 29th 1987 that killed the Independence and the territorial integrity of this country, I describe it as the biggest and the most treacherous act ever in the historical or even in the prehistoric times. Everybody knows that this accord was forced on this country by India under duress using even military force by invading the Islands Airspace as well as the maritime space violating all accepted diplomatic norms. It had been singed under emergency law declared Island wide and also Island wide curfew, even against the wishes of some prominent Cabinet Ministers like Lalith Athulathmudali and the Prime Minister Premadasa and the wishes of the whole country. The content of the Accord was privy to everybody at Home and even to Rajiv Gandhi’s own Cabinet until it was released after signing. Even the 13th Amendment consequent to the Accord was illegally, immorally an unethically passed in Parliament by JR using all his cunningness using his dictatorial powers for his own political survival after using his 3/5 the majority he had. I have no doubt that minister Jaishankar also knew this very well.

First of all, minister Jaishankar or his government who were guilty of this crime committed against Sri Lanka has no right to ask the Sri Lanka Government in the form of a threat to consider the full implementation of the 13th Amendment or even parts of it either.  He also has no business to issue statements like the full implementation of the 13th Amendment in Sri Lanka is “critical” for achieving reconciliation with the minority Tamil community”, Because they are entirely domestic matters that no Indian Minister or the Indian Government or any other government has a right to comment or dictate terms to another independent and sovereign State. He also has no right to say early conduct of provincial elections is critical” Whether early or never Provincial Council election again is entirely our business, because it is again purely a domestic concern, a mad riddle planted by JR due to pressure from India to set up a provincial council for the North and the East, that ruined this country like a veritable curse from Satan.  HE should also know that he was making this threat to the Sri Lankan government at a time when the whole country wants both the Rajive /JR accord and the 13th abolished immediately before they ruin this country completely.

The Indian Foreign Minister also must not forget that the 13A was implemented in November 1987 after the signing of the Indo-Lanka Accord in July 1987.Therefore it was treacherous act on the part of India against this country and its people.  Both were forcibly pushed down Sri Lanka’s throat by India & constitute acts of clear aggression and invasion as well. As I see it, the Rajiv/JR accord was the biggest invasion India ever did on Sri Lanka, not only in history but even in prehistoric times. It has no parallel in history or even legendary times. The Rajiv/JR accord together with what followed as the 13th Amendment are fatal cancers in the body politics of this country introduced by India to ruin this country and the Sinhala nation. Therefore, they have to be removed by a surgical operation as early as possible if mother Lanka is to be saved. We can understand an inexperienced young Rajiv making that mistake on wrong advice. But we cannot believe a man of your calibre behaving like this playing to cheap and low Indian politics. But I am surprised to see a man like Jaishankar also committing this type of crimes against a neighboring country. 

 For your information Rajiv had to pay with his life on 21 May 1991 at Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu for what he did to this country. Had he listened to my advice sent in March the same year under the signature of Paliipana Chandananda the Most Venerable Mahaahnaayaka Thera of Asgiriya Chapter warning him that he might have to pay with his own life if he does not stop assisting the LTTE. This is a good lesson to everyone who try to harm this land of the Buddha, thrice offered to him and blessed by him as the Land where his dispensation will last for 5000 years ignoring his own motherland Jambudveepa. I believe you being an expert in foreign affairs should know better than anyone else as to how you should deal with another sovereign state.

Again, for him to say “Durable efforts towards reconciliation are in the interests of all sections in Sri Lanka is a biased statement made without knowing the wider ramifications of this problem in the Sri Lankan context and also as to who has created this problem and how it had been made intractable by whom. ’Mr. Foreign Minister, do you think that it is legitimate, ethical and moral for you to make such irresponsible statements with no knowledge of the real issue. Therefore, you should not have made such comments regarding the governance of this country which is a free and independent sovereign country, unless you think that Sri Lanka is already a colony of yours. You also have highlighted the need to pay special attention to the requirements of the Indian-origin Tamil community. That again is uncalled for, for a politician of another country to dictate. For your information I must clearly tell you that country our primary concerned our own people, that is the Sinhalese who were the people who found and developed the civilization in this country. It is high time that you Indians must understand that as a nation our primary duty is to look after the welfare of the natives before we attend to the problems of those foreign people who have migrated here as traders, illicit immigrants or coolies to work and earn their living on colonial enterprises such as plantations, tobacco farms and public work.

Dear Mr. Jaishankar, have you forgotten that you are only the Foreign Minister of India who had come to discuss few diplomatic issues of mutual interest.  Therefore, you have no right to dictate terms on local politics that are irrelevant to a diplomatic visit to another independent neighboring country. You being a former veteran of the IOS, I am sure know Sri Lanka is not yet a part of India as you think. Please remember that Sri Lanka is a fully independent, sovereign and free Republic since 1972 as much as you think, India is. Mr Minister, I have to remind you that this our country and it is not yours. Governance in this country is our job. You have no right to pass remarks on that subject.

I pause the question to you, if any one of our Ministers come to India and make a foolish statement regarding governance in India like what you have done here, how would you have felt it? How would you have reacted? Will you ever tolerate it.  And how the Indian press and the public would have responded. Please ponder for a while. Indian politicians and mandarins with their great civilization and heritage must behave in a more dignified manner, I think. As much as you have your self-respect and dignity, we too have ours at the same level if not higher, though we are a small country compared with yours in size. It is not the size which matters but the status and the dignity of a people as a fully independent and sovereign nation that really matters.

 Mr. Minister. you must be happy that there was not a single politician with a spine here in Sri Lanka either in the government or in the opposition among whom you met and had discussion with, to say this to your face. Maybe we don’t have politicians and mandarins of your quality who love this country due to excessive brain washing done by the colonial invaders for 518 years that has completely obliterated all what is called patriotism in them. I admire your ‘Made in India” mentality very much. But please get rid of this view and mentality that Sri Lanka is only an appendage of India. True, we share a lot with India. But we are two different entities with distinctive cultures from time immemorial except for the fact that we have been one landmass in the geological past as geologists say. But please remember we are not your door step or the dustbin either. Neither you Indian politicians nor mandarins have a right to talk about the 13th Amendment to the Constitution as it was veritable political canker forcibly imposed by your government on us consequent to  the Rajiv /Jr Accord which introduced the idea of a Provincial Council to the North and the east which Rajiv got declared as the historical Homeland of Tamils in Sri Lanka tantamount to naked invasion of a neighbor country. We thought you knew that the only traditional Homeland of Tamils in the world is found in southern India. The implementation of the13th A in full or in parts or non-implementation is entirely the discretion of Sri Lanka. As far as I know provincial councils for the other 7 provinces were a homemade idea conceived in the brain of JR Jayawardhana.  I remember his saying once that he will give a Cabinet rank minister to each district making the total 25. And he did it through the District Ministry system long before the Rajiv/JR Accord was even conceived.  With the invention of PCC the number got reduced to 9 but the cumulative damage is much greater.

As you are aware the Accord was signed on 29th July 1987 and the 13th A was passed in Nov 1987 only.

India wanted to have a Provincial council only for the North and East to satisfy Prabhakaran, with the explicit conditions included there in the Accord. Through this accord India has laid the permanent foundation for the future EELAM in Sri Lanka, comprising 2/3 the area of the county it was declared the historical and traditional home land of the Tamil people. Tamil was also made an official language in the whole country and making Tamil the language of administration in the North and East thereby introducing asymmetrical devolution a reality, confining Sinhala to 7 provinces under the 16th Amendment to the 1987 Constitution. That was the first step towards declaring it a Tamil State enabling them to unilaterally declare the EELAM in future. Who knows whether Rajiv has promised Prabhakaran that he will, not only get it declFared as the traditional homeland of Sri Lanka Tamils (a criminal travesty of history of this Island someone should have contested in courts) but also, he will set the boundaries of the future EELAM permanently on ground, the way Prabha wanted. Probably he must have said so when he gifted his bullet proof jacket to Prabha.

Between July 1987.and Nov 1987 lot of thinking has gone in to it. According to what I have gathered from informal sources, the Provincial councils for the other 7 Provinces was JR’s brainchild to control the NE. The whole country was against it. 3 people died in protests at Petta that was organized under Mrs Bandaranayaka’s leadership where many of the prominent living leaders were also there.

The provisions of the Accord were a complete travesty of the 2500-year-old history of this country. What is more is the political and administrative changes that have followed the JR/Rajiv Accord have completely destroyed the age old efficient administrative machinery that was there for centuries. The extra expenditure, wastage and pilferage involved in the Provincial Councils and the Pradeshiya Sabha has made the country bankrupt. As such if anyone intends to rivers this situation and bring back the country to normalcy, both these curses, that is the Rajiv/JR Accord and the Provincial councils have to be reversed. The whole country claim that they should be abolished immediately.  I am certain one fine day when a true patriotic Sinhala leader comes, he will definitely abolish both these curses.

world of difference between the present-day Indian diplomacy and the ancient.

I would also like to note a world of difference between the present-day Indian diplomacy and the ancient. When we recall the graceful Dharmasokian diplomacy of the yore and the stupidity and the quality displayed by the present-day rulers towards Sri Lanka, I really get disgusted and shocked. King Dharmaskoka introduced two eternal legacies to this country, First, the Dharmasokian model of statecraft through his erstwhile friend King Devanam piyatissa (from 247 BC to 207 BC) and second, the introduction of Buddhism by sending his own son and the Sacred Bo tree through his daughter Sangamitta and laid the foundation to the great Sinhala Buddhist civilization what we cherish so much today on this Island. King Dharmasoka never asked for ay condition as you perhaps know, even our own historical ancestor Prince Vijaya and his party came from north Bharat in 543 BC. To that extent we are also people of Indian origin. Therefore, I am asking you as to why you people adopt two different policies, one for those who have come from the North and the other from the South of India.

So in this backdrop why don’t you, people of the preset day generation  understand that although we are geographically and politically two separate countries  in fact we all belong to a single family from time immemorial and as such why do you Indian politicians discriminate between the native Sinhalese and Tamils and why do you insist for special treatment to Tamils who were brought by the Western colonial invaders in the post 1505 period to work on their projects and plantations and left astray behind when the invaders left in 1948. My conviction is it is nothing but Delhi’s political dependence on the Tamilnadu votes.

A short glimpse of some historical events in the chequered Indo Sri Lanka relations from the 2nd century BC. up to the 12thCentru AD. It is on record that starting from Sena Guttika in the 2nd century BC from Northern Bharath there had been nearly 18 invasions by the South Indian Cholas, Pandiyans and finally Magas in the 12th century all of whom devastated one of the greatest civilizations in the world, that was inhala Buddhist and plundered all our national treasure in the Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa civilizations.

In spite of all those unpardonable crimes I would recall, for your information how the Sinhala Buddhist nation of this country consecrated and accepted Sri Vijaya Rajasinha in 1739,  the son of Veeraparakarama Narendasinha (the last King of the Sinhala lineage) whose mother was a south Indian Nayakkaara Princess, which  the British called the  Kandyan Kingdom in English for their convenience but remained as the Sinhale kingdom  up to date.  The Kandyan Convention of 2nd March was  a treaty between the United Kingdom and the Sinhale Kingdom.

As such it is a foregone conclusion that it was the Sinhale Kingdom that got political freedom and independence from Briton in 1948. The transfer of political power in 1815 was the result of a big coup and a master intrigue by the British. The last king of Sinhale Sri Wickram Rajasinha again whose mother was  a South Indian  princes was actually liked by the subjects of the Kingdom. But the shrewd John Doily by intrigue and conspiracy got the last King demonized  calling him a cruel Tamil as more fully described under sec 2 and 3 of the Kandyan Convention, where it is  said the tyranny and the cruelties of the Tamil  King were abolished and extinguished and all male persons being or pretending to be relations of the Royal Sri Wickrama Rajasinha, either by affinity or blood and inheritors in the ascending descending or collateral line are hereby declared enemies to the Government of the Kandyan Provo vices and are a prohibited from entering those provinces …etc

Thus, it was the British who planted the first germ of ethnic animosity between Sinhalese and Tamils and it was the British who first labeled the Indian Tamils as the enemies of the Sinhala people in pursuance of their divide and rule policy. Second came those so-called high-class Jaffna Tamils elevated tactfully by the British first providing better opportunities for education and second government jobs. Thus accordingly in fact, it was also the British who first drew a cleavage between south Indian and native Sinhala rulers and planted the seeds of divide and rule policy in this country. Third, the Tamil political elite, who having joined the Federal bandwagon of a Christian Chelvanaayagam came from Malaysia at the age of 11 years and supported by the Church up to date who fueled communal and ethnic  differences. Fourth, the church took over this vicious mission supported by colonial west and NGOO supported by these elements.  The last factor that fueled ethnic tension  in promoting this Sinhala Tamil division was the Tamil  communal political parties  such as Ilankai Tamil Arusu kachhci, Tamil congress and Federal Party. All politicians of the day  failed to curb this disaster right in 1948 when the Solebury Constitution included the 29th section on minorities. The Sinhala leaders who took over the country in 1948 should have told the British that when we handed over this country in 1815 to you there was only one nation and the name of the country handed over was Sinhale” (which British called Ceylon) as given in the Convention.  There was only one nation at that time. That was    Sinhala and further there was no mention about any minority although both communities Tamil and Muslim were there living in peace and harmony within the Sinhala nation,

Therefore, they should have said you should give Freedom to the country and the nation who had handed it over to you in 1815 and not to any other party. The fact that it was the Sinhale that was handed over by that convention gives legitimacy to that argument. Unfortunately, there was neither a Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim leader with vision to and political maturity to for see the future dangers mother Lanka will face.

Going back to no 3.”Durable efforts towards reconciliation are in the interests of all sections in Sri Lanka you have said as minister Jaishankar noted.

The only way to ethnic reconciliation is to go back to the status quo that was there in 1815.

There was perfect ethnic reconciliation at the time of handing over the country in 1815.The only way to ethnic reconciliation is to go back to the status quo that was there in 1815. Any deviation from that position is unconstitutional, illegal, immoral and unethical in the Sri Lankan context.  In 1815 the county was known as Sinhale. It was then one nation and one country; and the nation was Sinhala. Both Tamil and Muslim minority groups who lived within were also citizens of Sinhale. If this status quo had been restored in 1948 at the time of transfer of power from Briton to this country this problem would not have been there today.

The Sinhala people who found this nation and who built up the civilization on this Island are not prepared to allow either external forces or internal forces created by the colonial invaders to break up their motherland by public auction to satisfy the anti-national elements created by the colonial forces. The motherland of the Sinhala people was artificially divided in to ethnic groups. It is  a  creation of the post 1832 by the  colonial invaders in the long history of this land done, in pursuance of their divide and rule policy. As such the only way for ethnic reconciliation  is to go back to the pre1815 status and accept one nation that was there in 1815 with each ethnic group practicing their own cultural practices while accepting that this land is the land of the Sinhala nation as they are the people who have found this country and who have built up the civilization on this land from the dawn of history. To that extend the western argument that this country is a multiethnic, multireligious and multilingual is nonsense. Once all people accept that this is the Land of the Sinhala Buddhist the riddle of reconciliation will be over for good.

Anyone who does not accept that concept, ipso-facto, should not be qualified to be a citizen of this land. Therefore no one who is not prepared to abide by that condition should be given the citizenship of this land.

This is the kind of advice a person of Jaishankar should give to all minorities in Sri Lanka if he is a true friend of this country. Therefore. I deeply regret to note how he is trying to fish in troubled waters. Mr. Jaishankar please do not try to light your cigar when both our beards and the head are caught up with fire.

Once we assert our independence and sovereignty within this legal framework the so-called newly invented reconciliation concept will disappear. Thereafter Minister Jayashankar also need not bother to agitate for reconciliation of Indian Tamils of Indian origin here thereafter. If you are so concerned about Tamils  Sri Lanka then why don’t you take all of them back to India.

4. Finally his reference on the need to pay special attention to the requirements of the Indian-origin Tamil community, I must say is absurd and highly irreverent to his diplomatic mission and uncalled for the decorum of a foreign minister of another country. I can understand an ordinary uneducated politician uttering that kind of rubbish. But what I can’t imagine is a person of your calibre and reputation making such a nasty statement to the press utterly irrelevant to your mandate. If you are so concerned about them, why don’t you ask your Prime Minister to take them back and without adding fuel to the fire by creating more problems to us.

Mr. Minister, please leave the Tamils citizens of this country alone. They are now our full citizens and not yours any more. if you or your PM are concerned about their welfare, then please ask them, in the first place, to think and behave as the sons of this soil and ask them to get integrated with the native Sinhalese without arousing them against the government by trying to make them to think and behave as Indians while subsisting on this land. Isn’t it dam political bullshit. We are looking after them better than how you people are treating the Tamils in South India.  The tragedy is you still consider them as Indian without realizing that they are the citizens of another country and have ceased to be Indians any more. If they also want to think and behave like Indians then they too have to get back to India as soon as possible.

Mr Jaishankar we are not against any humanitarian support given to them by you because they are our citizens. But you should channel them through the Government of this country and stop discrimination as you do at present by dealing directly with them through your Ambassador, stationed here. There is a government in this country.

If you don’t want them to be our citizens you are welcome to take them back to India at any time.

People like you and your government should not instigate them to think and behave like Indians any more. Tell these Tamils in Sri Lanka, whether they are in the north, east or in the hill country that they are now Sri Lankan citizens and no more Indians and as such they should address their problems to the government of this country and no to India as they do it now. On the other hand, if you don’t want to do that and still want them to be referred as people of Indian origin and want them to think as Indians, please invite them to India and you can settle them anywhere in India.

4 Lastly, in your comments you have said that not enough power had been devolved to the provincial councils to make them meaningful. What you mean by making meaningful is left unexplained. Do you mean a federal state or eelam. If you are really serious on this matter, I strongly suggest you scrap the 1963 Act, the Government of India led by Jawaharlal Nehru, that declared secessionism as an illegal and act and take your beloved Tamils of Indian origin in this country also to their original home land making them to feel that they are back in heaven. I can assure you then before long Tamandu will declare independence unilaterally as the first step in balkanizing India.

The present President of Sri Lanka or the interim government has a mandate to discuss these issues raised by you.

I must also remind you that neither the present President of Sri Lanka or the interim government has a mandate to discuss these issues raised by you as their job is only to implement the mandate given to Gotabhaya by the people in 2019 and 2020, as he had to leave the country under mysterious circumstances and resign from abroad. For them to deal with what you have raised the President and the government in particular has to get a fresh mandate from the people. Any action taken outside this mandate is unconstitutional, illegal ,unethical and immoral and therefor the could be tried in a court of law.

Mr, Jaishankar I must also tell you that the ideas expressed here embodies the prevailing general consensus of the majority in this country. They are not confined to my personal ideas. 

Once again, I demand you to make an open apology from the people of Sri Lanka for the undiplomatic statement you made before you left the Island

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.



Copyright © 2024 All Rights Reserved. Powered by Wordpress